Nature of Copper & Iron
Revised: May 2021
Of the Nature of Copper
Copper is an unclean and imperfect body, engendered of ARGENT-VIVE, impure, unfixed, earth, burning, red (not clear), and of the like SULPHUR. It wants purity, fixation, and weight and has too much of an impure color, and earthiness not burning.
Metal copper, equivalent to the Vishudda chakra of the yogis, is the Venus planetary center in esoteric astrology. Notice the “weight” hint again from Bacon connected with this emotional body, the seat of desires. Basil Valentine observed: “Copper is generated of much Sulphur but its Mercury and Salt are in equality.” Again, they both agree. And again, the super-conscious (Mercury, Argent Vive) expressions are not a priority when desires are steeped in selfishness, and 'wanting' purity and 'weight,' that is, love for anyone but the lower, petty self. Our base desires must be transmuted to be transcended, a difficult task at the very least. Only persistent 'decoction' (meditation) can turn this center by gently pulling down super-conscious influence. The steady process of disciplined meditation will affect the desire nature in a most positive way. Base, selfish desires seem to melt away when our passions are abated through meditation.
We accomplish nothing in this life without Desire. If our intent is to accomplish the Great Work and the 5th Spiritual Kingdom, then our desire must burn with a zeal far more earnestly and continuously than any physical worldly pursuit. Many times our Desire nature is squandered by constantly changing what we wish for ourselves. Therefore Bacon says of Copper: “impure, unfixed, earth, burning, red(not clear).” But however we employ our Desire Nature, our desires must be controlled, focused. This, coupled with concerted continence of the reproductive force, backs our desires with supplemental power.
Of the Nature of Iron
Iron is an unclean and imperfect body, engendered of ARGENT-VIVE, too much fixed, earth, burning, white and red not clear, and of the like SULPHUR. It wants fusion, purity, and weight and has too much fixed unclean SULPHUR and burning earthiness. What has been spoken, every Alchymist must diligently observe.
Metal iron is equivalent to the Svadishthana chakra of the yogis and the Mars planetary force center in esoteric astrology. Notice that Bacon’s descriptions above for lead, copper, and iron are quite similar. Basil Valentine describes the Mars Center: “Iron is found to have the least portion of Mercury but more of Sulphur and Salt.” Iron, or the Mars Center, is the seat of human volition and the will-sex urge, according to Qabalists. In generic humanity this is probably the most virile influence in our daily lives. Our pseudo sense of self importance derives most of its false identity through the misaligned influence of this force center primarily, and from the seat of desires (the Venus chakra, or Copper) secondarily. These two combined energies create most of mankind's woes, individually and collectively. Our misdirected will-sex urges and desires have brought our planetary environment and ecosystem almost to its knees through our seemingly unconscious need to self destruct. Master Alchemists write of the “Iron Key” in their manuscripts, recognizing the bare fact that to turn the energies exuding from this center is paramount to turning all the others. The squandering of the 'reproductive force' must be abated and turned into the healing balm which restores living tissue and musculature at the cellular level.
It is not total sexual abstinence that is necessary at the beginning of our quest. Many of the Sages and Philosophers of yesteryear had children. All that is required is sensible sexual continence. The reason for continence is simple; it conserves energy. Meditation is key behind it all. Meditation assuages our emotions, which control our desires, and results in sensible continence. That is, IF our goal is the Great Work.
All three modes of expression within each of these and the other metals must be balanced, purified, and sublimated by unification. Fully matured, “ripe mercury” (super-consciousness) must eventually flow and express through all seven force centers. When each of the seven Metals are turned and continuously express super-conscious influence it becomes the “Secret Fire” of the alchemists flowing through each Metal. The combination of ALL SEVEN ‘Secret Fires’ then advances to the “Spiritual Fire”, that is, the raising of Kundalini. When this is achieved, enlightenment is at hand.
The clandestine relationship between Mars (Volition) and Venus (Desire) suggested in mythology is the core message behind these two Force Centers. So Roger Bacon ends this portion on Iron with: “What has been spoken, every Alchymist must diligently observe.”